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Constitutional Law Criminal Law

SCOTUS Decision on Juveniles is Harsh and Wrong on Many Levels

Where to begin with a discussion on SCOTUS’ 6-3 decision in Jones v. Mississippi that effectively reinstated Juvenile Life Without Parole (JLWOP or LWOP hereafter)? Do I point out that its author Brett Kavanaugh wept crocodile tears before Congress about how mean they were to hold him accountable for actions and indiscretions he did as […]

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Constitutional Law Criminal Law

Quirky Minn. Law Comes Back to Bite Officer Chauvin’s Defense

It’s an old legal adage and one of my favorites in law that “Bad Cases Make Bad Law.” While the phrase has been interpreted a variety of ways for me its meant that cases that arise out of extreme examples or unique situations often end up creating a law either from judicial decisions or by […]

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Constitutional Law Employment Law

SCOTUS dissent is message to reverse Church/State law

The Supreme Court deciding not to hear a case is a regular occurrence. Getting SCOTUS to hear a case is exceedingly hard, and as Chief Justice, John Roberts has shrunk the Court docket to 1960s numbers. But what seems like a quiet little denial of certiorari yesterday is actually a not-so-cryptic message from the right […]

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Constitutional Law Wrongful Convictions

NYC Bill Limiting Qualified Immunity Is a Big Deal

New York City’s council has passed legislation that would effectively end qualified immunity for police officers in cases of excessive force and unreasonable searches, making it easier for people to sue individual officers. So-called “qualified immunity” policies shield on-duty officers from being held personally accountable in civil rights lawsuits if their conduct does not violate […]

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Constitutional Law

Dustin Higgs’ Execution Was Wrong and What Sotomayor Had to Say About it is Right.

The Supreme Court allowed the execution of  Dustin Higgs late Friday, making Higgs the thirteenth person to be killed by the federal government since July. Since July. And after seventeen years without a single federal execution. Higgs’ execution was a miscarriage of justice for a number of issues. First of all, he was suffering from covid-19 […]

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Constitutional Law

SCOTUS Dodges Issue of Removing Undocumented Immigrants from Census

The Supreme Court has dismissed as premature a challenge to President Trump’s plan to exclude people living in the country without legal documents from the Census’ population count, used to allot states seats in the House of Representatives. The six conservative judges on the Court said that until action is actually taken and people are […]

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Constitutional Law Criminal Law

Texas Indictment of Netflix Over “Cuties” Violates First Amendment, Denigrates Art

There is much wrong with a Texas County deciding to indict Netflix for its distribution of the French film Cuties. First about the movie – Netflix released “Cuties,” originally titled “Mignonnes,” last month to strong national reaction. The French-language film centers on 11-year-old Amy, a Senegalese immigrant, who becomes a member of a dance group dubbed the “Cuties.” […]

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Constitutional Law

Fed Judge Grants Qualified Immunity But Writes Powerful Decision Against It

Federal Judge Carlton Reeves, of the Southern District of Mississippi, ruled that the doctrine of qualified immunity meant that a white police officer could not be sued for racially profiling and then terrorizing an innocent black man on the side of the road. Judge Reeves ruled that the law required the dismissal of the case […]

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Constitutional Law

In Another 5-4 SCOTUS Decision, Religious Schools Can Now Get Gov’t Funding

This SCOTUS season is turning this into a full-time Supreme Court Blog which is not what it is supposed to be. But these past few decisions have been so important -not just for the decisions themselves, but as a window into this divided, politicized Court, that I wanted to write about them. In a huge […]